Psalms 39:4

4 “Show me, LORD, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting my life is.

Psalms 39:4 in Other Translations

KJV
4 LORD, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days, what it is; that I may know how frail I am.
ESV
4 "O LORD, make me know my end and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting I am!
NLT
4 “ LORD, remind me how brief my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are numbered— how fleeting my life is.
MSG
4 "Tell me, what's going on, God? How long do I have to live? Give me the bad news!
CSB
4 "Lord, reveal to me the end of my life and the number of my days. Let me know how transitory I am.

Psalms 39:4 Meaning and Commentary

Psalms 39:4

Lord, make me to know mine end
Not Christ, the end of the law for righteousness, as Jerom interprets it; nor how long he should live, how many days, months, and years more; for though they are known of God, they are not to be known by men; but either the end of his afflictions, or his, latter end, his mortal state, that he might be more thoughtful of that, and so less concerned about worldly things, his own external happiness, or that of others; or rather his death; see ( Job 6:11 ) ; and his sense is, that he might know death experimentally; or that he might die: this he said in a sinful passionate way, as impatient of his afflictions and exercises; and in the same way the following expressions are to be understood;

and the measure of my days, what it [is];
being desirous to come to the end of it; otherwise he knew it was but as an hand's breadth, as he says in ( Psalms 39:5 ) ;

[that] I may know how frail I [am];
or "what time I have here"; or "when I shall cease to be" F21; or, as the Targum is, "when I shall cease from the world"; so common it is for the saints themselves, in an angry or impatient fit, to desire death; see ( Job 7:15 Job 7:16 ) ( Jonah 4:8 ) ; and a very rare and difficult thing it is to wish for it from right principles, and with right views, as the Apostle Paul did, ( Philippians 1:23 ) .


FOOTNOTES:

F21 (yna ldx hm) "quanti aevi ego", Montanus; "quamdiu roundanus ero", Vatablus; "quam brevis temporis sim", Musculus.

Psalms 39:4 In-Context

2 So I remained utterly silent, not even saying anything good. But my anguish increased;
3 my heart grew hot within me. While I meditated, the fire burned; then I spoke with my tongue:
4 “Show me, LORD, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting my life is.
5 You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Everyone is but a breath, even those who seem secure.
6 “Surely everyone goes around like a mere phantom; in vain they rush about, heaping up wealth without knowing whose it will finally be.

Cross References 3

  • 1. S Job 14:5; Psalms 90:12
  • 2. S Job 14:2
  • 3. S Genesis 47:9; S Job 7:7; Psalms 103:14